Wimbledon Ladies' Day Eight Tips: Giorgi a false underdog against Makarova
All eight last 16 clashes in the ladies singles take place today with a number of competitive matches, and our tennis columnist Dan Weston previews the action...
"The Italian has a rather hit and miss reputation on tour, particularly on serve, but she does have a solid record in quicker conditions, going 9-5 (102.2% combined serve/return points won percentage) on grass in the last 18 months and 7-4 (101.8%) indoors, across the last three years, at main tour level."
Williams the only heavy ladies favourite on Manic Monday
Today's schedule is aptly titled 'Manic Monday', the day off that all players enjoyed yesterday at Wimbledon now means that all remaining players left in both the men's and the women's events are in action today.
This should lead to some very interesting matches, both from a betting and watching perspective, with just one player - Serena Williams - a heavy favourite, as she faces Evgeniya Rodina in the later match this evening.
Outright hope Goerges can continue progress
Our outright hopes in this event now lie with Julia Goerges, and having backed the German at [180.0] prior to the event, I am envisaging that there could be some hedging (or part-hedging) potential should she get the better of Donna Vekic.
Goerges enjoys favourite status here, being [1.84] to do so, and she looks a small amount of value over the rapidly improving Croat.
Bencic could threaten Kerber's open draw
Another player that looks slight value is Belinda Bencic, who is a heavy [3.65] underdog against Angelique Kerber. The top half of the draw has opened up very nicely for Kerber, who won't have to play a top ten opponent before the final - if she does at all - but Bencic may have other ideas. The worry here for anyone considering backing Bencic is that she doesn't have the biggest sample of data on grass, bringing into slight question how reliable her numbers truly are.
Hit and miss Giorgi value in quicker conditions
The player that I do like at market prices is Camila Giorgi. The Italian has a rather hit-and-miss reputation on tour, particularly on serve, but she does have a solid record in quicker conditions, going 9-5 (102.2% combined serve/return points won percentage) on grass in the last 18 months and 7-4 (101.8%) indoors, across the last three years, at main tour level.
This makes her a solid top 20-30 player in quicker condition events, much better than her current ranking which sees her outside the top 50. Opponent Ekaterina Makarova has a higher reputation, having previously been in the top 10, but at the age of 30, her stats are on the decline, and she can't boast equivalent numbers to Giorgi, so taking Giorgi as a [2.12] underdog is our recommended position today.
Ostapenko opposition can wait
In other matches, there wasn't anything in the way of actionable value, but it will be interesting to see whether some of the lower-ranked players left in the draw can continue their progress at odds-against.
Su-Wei Hsieh is often under-rated but looks accurately priced for her match against Dominika Cibulkova - the Slovak is a [1.55] favourite - while Aliaksandra Sasnovich is a bigger underdog at [3.25] as she faces the 2017 French Open champion, Jelena Ostapenko. I've had it in mind to oppose Ostapenko on grass, although there hasn't been a great opportunity so far. Today isn't that chance either.
Pliskova with a great chance to finally win a Slam
Another player who has impressed on their run to this stage is Alison Van Uytvanck, with the big-serving Belgian taking on Darya Kasatkina. Van Uytvanck should enjoy the quick conditions that grass brings more than the Russian, Kasatkina, and if she was priced in excess of [2.70], she'd look like some reasonable value.
Finally, Karolina Pliskova will never get a better chance to turn around her underwhelming Grand Slam record as this event, being one of only two top ten players left in the event. She's already been close to the exit door, but today faces Kiki Bertens. Pliskova is [1.52] to make it through to the quarter-finals, where she would face Goerges or Vekic.
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Back Camila Giorgi at [2.12]